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Super League: Bradford Bulls v Wigan Warriors Preview
Wigan Warriors coach Shaun Wane expects relegated Bradford to be dangerous in Sunday’s clash at the Provident Stadium.
The Bulls were relegated to the Championship following defeat at Huddersfield last weekend and suffered a humiliating 84-6 hammering at the DW Stadium in April.
The former champions have been boosted by the news this week that full-back Lee Gaskell intends to stay and help them return to the top flight and Wane told the Wigan website that he expects a good contest.
"I have tried to imagine how (Bradford boss) Jimmy Lowes would approach it, and my guess is that he would prepare his players to try to finish on a major positive for the rest of the season," he said.
"I am expecting a very motivated Bradford Bulls side on Sunday as Wigan are one of the biggest games of the season. I think it will be a different Bulls team than against Huddersfield last weekend and one which will give us a stiff test."
Reflecting on the Easter Monday score, the former-Great Britain prop added: "I do not think it will be like that this time. I am anticipating a team who are very hurt, who want to perform and go into the end of the Super League season as well as next year in a good manner."
With just a four-day turnaround before next week’s game against Salford, Wane resisted the temptation to give full-back Matty Bowen another week off and has named the Queenslander in his 19-man squad, meaning that Lewis Tierney misses out.
The Bulls, who today announced the signing of Welsh international prop Dan Fleming from Castleford for next season, have another front-rower, Jordan Baldwinson, returning this week. Elliot Kear and Danny Williams have also been named in the 19-man squad, though Adrian Purtell, Luke George and the injured Chev Walker all miss out.
Bulls: Addy, Arundel, Baldwinson, Blythe, Donaldson, Fakir, Foster, Gale, Gaskell, Henry, Kear, Kearney, Manuokafoa, Mellor, O'Brien, Olbison, Pitts, Sidlow, Williams.
Warriors: Bateman, Bowen, Charnley, Clubb, Crosby, Doran, Farrell, Flower, Goulding, Hughes, James, Manfredi, O’Loughlin, Powell, Sarginson, Smith, Sutton, Taylor, Williams.
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First Utility Super League Table
|5||Hull K R||0||0|
|7||Salford Red Devils||0||0|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 5th February|
|20:00||Widnes vs Wigan|
|Friday 6th February|
|20:00||St Helens vs Catalans Dragons|
|Saturday 7th February|
|15:00||Warrington vs Salford|
|Sunday 8th February|
|15:00||Huddersfield vs Hull|
|15:00||Hull K R vs Leeds|
|15:30||Castleford vs Wakefield|
|Thursday 12th February|
|20:00||Salford vs St Helens|
|Friday 13th February|
|20:00||Hull vs Warrington|
|20:00||Leeds vs Widnes|
|20:00||Wigan vs Huddersfield|
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